Friday, 28 August 2015

A Pre-emptive Alternative

It is no disrespect to any of the newly ennobled, to say that David Cameron is obviously testing the entire system to destruction.

Cameron is no fool, and he will have something very specific in mind as a replacement. Whatever that is, it will be disastrous for anyone other than his own party, and his own faction of that party. A pre-emptive alternative is urgently needed.

No one much likes the 12 regions that were invented by the Major Government, which did so quite independently of the EU, for all that body’s many other faults. But they are there. They will do. They are just going to have to do.

In each of the 11 regions of Great Britain, lists of Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrat candidates would be submitted to the electorate. Any member of the relevant party in good standing within that region would have the right to appear on that list, simply by self-nomination.

As voters, each of us would vote by means of the time-honoured and the comprehensibly British X for one candidate on each list, and the six highest scorers would be elected. Casual vacancies would be filled by the next highest-scoring candidate who was willing and able to step up.

Thus, there would always be 66 Labour, 66 Conservative and 66 Liberal Democrat Senators, expressing the wide variety of perspectives within each of their respective traditions.

Furthermore, each of us would vote for one other party that, by contesting elections to the Senate, barred itself from contesting elections to the House of Commons. The top name on each of the five highest-scoring lists would be elected, with casual vacancies filled off the list.

And each of us would vote for one Independent from as many as wanted to stand, with the top five elected, and with casual vacancies filled as for Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrat Senators.

In Northern Ireland, each of the DUP, the UUP, the SDLP, Sinn Féin and the Alliance Party would have four Senators elected in the manner of the principal mainland parties, with a further five elected from other parties by the same means and subject to the same conditions as in Great Britain, together with five Independents.

Thus, each region would have 30 Senators, giving a total of 360. Undoubtedly, UKIP and the Greens would each give up one MP on a good night, for certainly 11 and probably 12 Senators on a permanent basis. Correspondingly, the SNP and, more regrettably, Plaid Cymru would not contest Senate elections.

All manner of Left parties would win at least some Senate seats when they would rarely, if ever, have won Commons ones.

The Liberal Party might reasonably expect a seat in the South West, and the SDP, which also still exists on a very small scale, might just about manage one in Yorkshire and the Humber, its main centre being Bridlington.

Certain commentators would be told to put up as Independents, or to shut up. They would gladly put up.


  1. One of the best features of the Corbyn leadership will be that it will finally bring you to the prominence you deserve.

  2. 500 words on the nose. What a pro.